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Sunscreens are one of the best antiaging products you can invest in.

However, how do you choose between mineral, physical, chemical? What’s the difference?

‘Mineral’ sunscreen is commonly referred to as a ‘physical’ sunscreen. They consist of active ingredients like zinc oxide or titanium oxide, forming a physical barrier that reflect the sun’s ultra-violet rays away from your skin. 

We’ve come a long way from the 80s when zinc was a thick, sometimes fluro coloured paste, that was worn like war paint. While the fluro kind sounds pretty fun, modern zinc oxide formulas are much more enjoyable to wear, easier to spread, and blend in easily.

Chemical sunscreens on the other hand, use active ingredients that act like sponges, absorbing the sun’s rays. These formulas include ingredients like oxybenzone, avobenzone, octinoxate and octisalate. Chemical sunscreens tend to absorb quickly and dry with an invisible finish, however, they can be irritating for sensitive or acne prone skin. While they have faced some criticism for having potential links to endocrine disruption, as well as adverse environmental affects, more research needs to be done, and using any kind of sunscreen is better than none at all.

When shopping for a sunscreen, always choose one that is “Broad Spectrum”. What does that mean exactly? UV, or ultra-violet light, can be UVA, which is the primary cause of premature aging, or UVB, which is what causes the skin to burn. Broad spectrum means that the sunscreen protects from both UVA and UVB rays.

Final sun protection tips - go for an SPF 30 or higher, avoid the sun during peak hours (10am to 2pm), find the shade, wear protective clothing (hat, glasses etc), and remember the “best” sunscreen is the one you will actually wear.

Shop sunscreen at Indie Beauty